The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too

Monday, March 18, 2019

Human Food That is Safe (And Healthy) for Your Dogs!

We all like to give our dogs’ treats or even some leftovers from dinner.  Or sometimes you want to make or share something you’re snacking on with your dogs and aren’t sure if it’s safe for them.  There are many human food items that are good for your dogs and can even be a nice addition to their diet.  Of course, each dog is different, so always start slowly with any new food item to see how your dog reacts.

Below are just some of the many human food items that are safe and even good for your dogs:


Salmon is a fatty fish which is also a good source of omega- 3 fatty acids. These fats support the immune system and can be beneficial for your dog’s skin and coat. There has also been some indication that they may benefit dogs with allergies. You can feed salmon or salmon oil. If feeding salmon, make sure it’s cooked before serving, as raw salmon can carry a parasite that can make your dog sick.

Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a great source of fiber.  They also contain vitamin B6, vitamin C, beta carotene, and manganese. Sweet potatoes are great sliced and dehydrated as a chewy treat for your dog. They are known to help with your dog’s digestive issues (as is pumpkin- also listed).

To read more on this story, click here: Human Food That is Safe (And Healthy) for Your Dogs!


Alligators 'Frozen' in North Carolina Swamp Exhibit Bizarre Survival Tactic

In a bizarre and instinctual survival tactic, alligators that normally lurk in a swamp in eastern North Carolina are now "frozen" beneath the murky water. Every inch of the reptiles’ bodies stay underwater — except for their snout.

Officials at The Swamp Park in Ocean Isle Beach took to Facebook this week with a video that shows the gators icebound in the swamp with only their snouts protruding and a toothy grin sealed in place.

“All our alligators in ice here,” George Howard, the manager at The Swamp Park, says in the video which had 12,000 views as of Thursday afternoon. “Eighteen American alligators are thinking ahead, as they poke their noses through the ice.”

The gators use the tactic to survive when the water around them reaches freezing temperatures in the frigid winter months.

To read more on this story, click here: Alligators 'Frozen' in North Carolina Swamp Exhibit Bizarre Survival Tactic


A Japanese Man Lucked Out in His Chance Encounter with a Giant Squid in the Relatively Shallow Waters of Toyama Bay in Japan

Opportunities to see giant squid in open waters are extremely rare. Although these mammoth sea creatures live in all of the world’s oceans, they prefer to make their homes in deep waters, out of sight of divers. Akinobu Kimura lucked out in his chance encounter with a giant squid in the relatively shallow waters of Toyama Bay in Japan.

Kimura says that his interest in the creature pushed aside any fear, despite the squid’s bursts of ink and its attempts to ensnare him in its enormous tentacles. Although the squid did not injure the diver, he said that the squid’s strong suckers caused him some pain.

The video shows the stunning sea monster’s bright red and white coloring. While the 12-foot-long squid seems huge, it actually is a fairly small representative of its species; giant squid can grow to as long as 43 feet.

Kimura helped it find its way back into the deeper ocean waters, but it remains unclear why or how the squid ended up in the bay. Kimura stated that it did not appear injured and may have been a juvenile that got lost.

Sightings of live giant squid are so rare that the first photographs of them weren’t taken until 2004, and the first filming of a live giant squid swimming in the ocean didn’t occur until 2012, according to CNN. Divers spent nearly 300 hours searching for the elusive animals in the Pacific Ocean. The filming was a first step in learning more about the nature of one of the deep sea’s most mysterious creatures.

He was even able to capture it on video.


The Most Common Rabbit Diseases

Rabbits are well-loved parts of many families that have the joy of caring for them. But unfortunately, and just like other pets, rabbits are prone to a variety of problems and diseases. Some diseases are more common than others and by being educated on these problems you may be able to prevent them or at least learn to recognize the signs and symptoms more quickly in order to get your rabbit help.

Rabbit Teeth Problems
Rabbits have 28 teeth that help them grind their food. These teeth, unlike those of a dog or cat, grow continuously throughout the life of your rabbit. Without proper items to help keep these teeth trimmed (like hay and safe wood) the teeth can end up becoming overgrown and prevent your rabbit from being able to eat.

Molar teeth (the teeth in the back of the mouth) can grow and create a bridge over the tongue which can inhibit chewing and swallowing. Teeth that become this overgrown can cause your rabbit to starve. 

Incisors teeth (the front teeth) will grow and start curling into the cheeks or other parts of your rabbit's mouth. This is very painful and can also cause your rabbit to stop eating.

Abscessed teeth can occur due to trauma or periodontal disease and are painful to your rabbit as well. These teeth need to be extracted in order to prevent the infection that is located around the tooth from spreading throughout your rabbit's body.

To read more on this story, click here: The Most Common Rabbit Diseases


Massive Tarantula Dragging Opossum To Its Doom Is Pure Nightmare Fuel

Australia has its fair share of oversized arachnids, but even down under, we’ve never seen a spider as fearsome as this.

A video taken recently in the Amazon shows a tarantula likely 10 inches in diameter, making a meal out of a young opossum. The auspicious encounter was recorded by biologists working with the University of Michigan, studying rare predator-prey interactions in the lowland rainforests of the Andean foothills, Fox News reports.

“This is an underappreciated source of mortality among vertebrates,” Daniel Rabosky, an evolutionary biologist at U of M who leads a team of researchers to the Amazon rainforest about once or twice a year, said in an online statement. “A surprising amount of death of small vertebrates in the Amazon is likely due to arthropods such as big spiders and centipedes.”

To read more on this story, click here: Massive Tarantula Dragging Opossum To Its Doom Is Pure Nightmare Fuel


Introducing a New Cat to Your Other Pets

Bringing a new cat into your home isn’t as simple as letting it loose with your other furry friends — that’s a good way to end up with furballs on your floors. It’s important to introduce your newest family member in a way that ensures a good relationship between all the animals under your roof.

Introducing your pets should be a slow process for best results. It can take days — or even weeks — for a new cat to become ready to meet their new friends. Different tricks can be required for introducing your new cat to other cats or dogs, but either way, it’s possible to have your pets becoming friends before too long.

If you have another cat

In a home with other cats, you should take several precautions, as cats are territorial animals that mark their areas with their scent.

Make sure you have a designated room for the new cat. This room should include their food, water, litter box, and toys. You should also include things like blankets and cat beds so your cat can spread their scent around their new home and become comfortable.

Don’t let your cats see each other as you bring the new cat into your home. Your cat will suspect they’re not alone from the scent of your other cat. Preventing visual contact is a good way to avoid yowling and fights — and upsetting both cats.

To read more on this story, click here: Introducing a New Cat to Your Other Pets


Saturday, March 2, 2019

Recipes For Dogs: Barbara Laino's Homemade Dog Food

In the April/May 2011 issue of The Bark, we interview Barbara Laino about the nutritional benefits of feeding your dog home-cooked meals in addition to, or in lieu of, commercial dog food (see “Home Cooking with Barbara Laino” April/May ’11). Here are two more recipes cooked up at Laino’s Midsummer Farm in Warwick, N.Y., that are sure to please your pup’s taste buds and keep her healthy:

Homemade Dinner Recipe for Dogs

This recipe feeds 2-3 large dogs for 7-10 days.

Grind the following ingredients in a meat grinder. Alternate ingredients so the grinder does the mixing for you. For instance, grind six necks, one carrot, a handful of garlic and pumpkin seeds, then six more necks and so on. Mix with a large spoon as you grind.

• 40 lbs of chicken neck without skins
• 10 lbs of chicken hearts
• 5-10 lbs of organic chicken livers
• 2 cans of pink salmon (optional)

Can be interchanged with other vegetables and fruits (no grapes or onions). Dogs and cats usually do not like citrus.
• 2-5 lbs carrots
• 1/2 a bunch of red cabbage
• 1 beet
• 2 apples
• 1/2 a bunch of spinach or other dark greens

Other ingredients:
• 1 cup of raw pumpkin seeds

Add a couple of the following items. Have these ready on hand as you are grinding and add a sprinkle here and there of each so you can thoroughly mix the batch of food.
• 9-12 raw whole eggs (optional)
• 2,000 mg of vitamin C powder
• 1/4 to 1/2 cup of Thorvin kelp powder
• 1/4 cup of tumeric powder
• 1/2 to 1 cup of dried parsley
• 1/2 to 1 cup of dried oregano
• 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
• 1/4 cup of tahini
• 1/4 cup of raw honey

After grinding and mixing all ingredients thoroughly, keep the food in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

Midsummer Farm Homemade Fish-Based Dog Dinner

(The below recipe is for 1 medium dog for 3 days, about 10 1-cup-size meatballs) This recipe can be made in larger batches for efficiency sake. This raw food can easily be frozen in meatball shapes appropriate for the size animals you are feeding.

Serving Sizes of Raw Meatballs:
• For a large 50-100 pound dog – three to five 1-cup-size meatballs per day
• For a 20-40 pound dog - two or three 1-cup-size meatballs per day
• For a 1-10 pound dog – one to two 1/2-cup-size meatballs per day
*Remember – this is a concentrated and efficient food source and is power packed. You won’t have to feed as much bulk-wise as with a commercial food; most commercial foods have a lot of fillers.

• 2 pounds of Frozen Fish Fillets. I like to use an oily fish like Mackerel or Whiting.
• 1-2 cans of Alaskan Wild Pink Salmon
• 1/4 - 1/2 pound of Beef Liver
• 1-3 Eggs (optional)
• 2 cups of Chopped Veggies (can be any combination of carrots, cabbage, broccoli, cooked squash, green beans, cooked yams, apples, berries, kale, spinach). Do NOT use onions or grapes of any kind.
• 1/2 cup of Pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds)
• 2 tbsp Honey
• 2 tbsp Dried Parsley
• 2 tbsp Dried Oregano
• 2 tbsp Tumeric Powder
• 2 tbsp Thorvin Kelp Powder
• Optional: 1 cup of cooked oatmeal, barley, or brown rice

Alternate putting frozen (still frozen grind much easier), liver, vegetables, garlic, and seeds through a meat grinder. As you grind into a big bowl, add and mix in the canned salmon, eggs, honey, dried herbs, powdered kelp.

Keep in a well-sealed container in fridge. Scoop out appropriate amounts for your pet, or if you made a very large batch that is more than can be consumed in about 5 days, roll into meal-sized meatballs and freeze. Then you can just take out whatever number meatballs you need and defrost them a couple days before you need to feed them. Meatballs will last at least 3 months in the freezer.


Chinchilla Sickness, Illness & Disease

The best cure to any illness, sickness or disease is prevention! A chinchilla will thrive and live a long and healthy life under the correct conditions but their health quickly breaks down when the basics of chinchilla care is not followed.

A chinchilla will generally hide any illness, sickness or disease very well as in the wild this would make them a prime target for predators. It is therefore important as a chinchilla owner, that you regularly examine a chinchilla to help identify any illness, sickness or disease sooner and prevent the condition progressing to a stage where it is hard to cure, or becomes incurable.

Chinchillas can acquire a disease, illness or sickness at any time and when they do, a chinchilla will go down-hill extremely rapidly, especially if you don't know what to do or what is actually wrong with them!

An understanding of the correct nutrition a chinchilla must have on a daily basis is of great importance, as improper feeding and unbalanced nutritional-ratios are one of the main causes of most illnesses, sickness or diseases in chinchillas.

The proper location and construction of the chinchilla cage is also essential for the prevention of many chinchilla diseases and illnesses. The cage must be housed in a quiet environment so a chinchilla can get a full uninterrupted night's sleep during the daytime hours and must be built to aid fresh air circulation daily. Dark or damp cages are not satisfactory nor are cages kept in a draughty area or in brightly lit areas.

To read more on this story, click here: Chinchilla Sickness, Illness & Disease